U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry and Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov will meet next week to discuss the situation in war-torn Syria, the United Nations said Tuesday.
“The meeting has been informed that Minister Lavrov and Secretary Kerry would be meeting next week,” the U.N. said in a statement following talks in Geneva between senior U.S., Russian and U.N. diplomats aimed at paving the way for a new international peace conference on Syria.
“The discussions were constructive, and focused on ways to ensure that the Geneva Conference on Syria can take place with the best chances of success,” the statement said.
It was the second meeting this month between U.N. peace envoy to Syria Lakhdar Brahimi and Russian Deputy Foreign Ministers Gennady Gatilov and Mikhail Bogdanov and U.S. Undersecretary of State for Political Affairs Wendy Sherman.
The so-called Geneva 2 conference, which is meant to follow up on an initial meeting in the Swiss city last year that produced a never-implemented transition plan for Syria, had initially been penciled in for this month, then July.
But before Tuesday’s session started, Brahimi told reporters the Geneva 2 conference probably would not happen in July either.
Afterwards the U.N. announced the Lavrov and Kerry meeting next week and added that “further consultations among the United Nations, the Russian Federation and the United States would take place thereafter on the date of the conference and to complete the list of participants.”